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Old October 12th, 2012 (06:35 PM).
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Quote originally posted by Shdwj:
People can accept gifts. People can also reject them. Jesus Christ is the way, the truth and the life. His gift of salvation is truly free, but accepting is something that a person must do out of his own will.

And as I stated before, God simply will not let sin go unpunished. Yes, he loves the sinner, but he must punish sin. And as I stated before, this is the reason why Christ came to earth: to make us clean from our sins.

And yes, God is the only all-powerful being. However, he gives everyone a choice. Imagine a world where people were forced to believe in him--a world where everyone was programmed to love God. God wouldn't be showing true love if he were showing forced love. No, because God truly loves each and every one of us, he gives us a choice. He wants us to be with him.
The point is, what person do you imagine knows that God exists in the afterlife (for obvious reasons) and then still rejects him? So are you saying there are repentant, God-loving people in hell? They don't deserve forgiveness for the sin of not believing in God as much as you deserve forgiveness?

I'm fairly certain if I was 100% sure that God existed I wouldn't reject his love. Which is the point I'm making here. After death, if God is real he would make himself known to the person. And then this person who was bad in life becomes repentant, asks for forgiveness. Who are you to say that they are not receiving forgiveness? Why are you claiming to know which sin in life is worth hell and which isn't? Isn't it part of your religion not to pretend to be God by judging others? Arguing "sin has to be punished" and "people who don't believe in God in life are all going to hell" are two entirely separate things.

Quote:
Now, on God's righteousness and judgment. Consider a judge. What does a judge do? He punishes evil and rewards good. He wouldn't be a good judge if he didn't do that. Imagine further if a loved one of his was caught in the act of murder. The judge wouldn't want to send him to prison, but because justice and righteousness must be upheld, he must give him his sentence. It doesn't make the judge love his friend any less, but the judge understands what is right and knows he must carry out justice in the name of righteousness--even if it brings him much sorrow to do so. Because God is holy, he cannot allow sin into heaven. He can't allow it not because he is following some rules that he must keep, but because it is his character. The laws in the Bible were created by him because he knows what is right because, as we mentioned before, he is the only all-powerful, omniscient being. God is righteousness in its truest form. Christ's sacrifice makes us clean, however, so we are given passage into heaven. But, as I said before, people need to make a choice.
Are you not a sinner then? Since, you know, no sin can make it into heaven and since you accepted God's love you're obviously going to heaven.

Quote:
I know I've been doing a lot of talking, but the main point I want to get across is this: God really, really does love you. As I have said before, he doesn't want anyone to go to hell. And as I mentioned earlier, God hates sin, not the sinner. His love is so real: and real love allows people to make their own choices out of their own will. I know that talk of hell can really scare some people, but don't let this conversation fool you into thinking that God is scary. He wants to come into your life and be, not only your God, but your friend. He did die for you, after all. The last thing I want to do is misrepresent him, and all he wants is for you to know that he loves you, and that he has made a way for all of us. :)
If God loves people then he wouldn't send anyone that repents into eternal damnation, whether they repented in life or after death. A God that looks at a person begging for forgiveness for their actions and says "no, burn for eternity", is not loving. You can't reconcile a merciful, forgiving God and a God that judges you entirely on how your life was, disregarding your repentance after death. One of those has to be not entirely true.
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